So as we go about our daily life we tend to be very focused on our own responsibilities, our to do list and our goals. We tend to get very busy. But beneath all of that activity on the surface of our lives, there is a connection to rhythm and a pulse of nature.
There is such a strong tendency for us to go about life with this sense that there is nature and there is us. Like we are separate from nature, but we are nature. We are a part of an interconnected unfolding web of life.
In the words of author and philosopher Alan Watts, “We do not “come into” this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean “waves,” the universe “peoples.” Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe.”
You are the earth like the apple is the apple tree
In his lectures, Alan also used to often give the example of our interconnectedness with a metaphor: Let’s say you have a tree in the garden, and every summer it produces apples. So we call it an “apple tree” because the tree apples; that’s what it does.
Alright, now here is a solar system, and one of the strange aspects of this solar system is that—at least on the planet Earth—the thing peoples, in just the same way that an apple tree apples.
If, a million years ago somebody came from another galaxy in a flying saucer and had a look at this solar system, and they looked it over and shrugged their shoulders and said, “Just a bunch of rocks.” And they went away. Then they came back a million years later and they looked at it again, and realized “Oh, we thought it was a bunch of rocks but it’s people-ing,” and it’s alive after all.”
Honoring life and belonging with life
For many of us we have become disconnected from this awareness of our oneness with nature. But the more we can remember that we are the earth, we are nature, the more I think we have a sense of belonging within it and trusting in it, and the more we tune into and honor the rhythm and pulse of life instead of pushing or fighting against it.
And if we can really listen to and align ourselves with the unfolding of nature, then we start to understand that we are a part of something much larger than ourselves, and we find a greater sense of ease, wisdom and belonging within ourselves.
This week’s invitation: Remember, you are nature unfolding
This week, as you go about your daily life, I invite you to continue to tune into the rhythms of your own body, mind and environment. Listen to them, attune yourself to them and see if you can work with them, and every now and then, just pausing to remember that you are not separate from the living world. You are nature unfolding.
As always thank you for your practice and your presence here in this community. Wishing you a wonderful week.